Monday, May 07, 2012

Sometimes You Just Gotta Yell and Scream

We had a real treat last night that actually turned into several highlights for me.  Marissa texted me and asked if the family could come over after Henry woke up and make us some Browned Butter Chocolate Chip cookies. ***NATURALLY, the answer was yes!

And we ate her delicious cookies and then managed to eat our way through whatever we had quickly available.  We sat outside (yes, I sat outside), we walked about the garden, some chives were dug up for Hank to plant.  Robert enjoyed talking with Hank (and later he was able to spend quite some time skyping with Jordan and Hillary).

But at one point, Marissa brought up the Safety Kids. This was a great cassette tape by Janeen Brady who had quite a few series out during the time my kids were wee ones.  Marissa remembered how I went into her kindergarten class and taught them about safety and I taught them the song, Yell and Scream.  At that time I was part of the Adam Walsh program that taught such things to elementary age children.  I did do this in several of the early grades.  I asked if she had a copy of that cassette which I had originally transferred to CDs (and later Dawn found CDs online).  She didn't so I went and got mine and made her a copy.  I've been listening to these sweet songs ever since last night and loved the memories I have of those songs.  And I realize that those messages are still really important ones to be taught to children today.   So if you have wee ones, find this program out there, this CD and enjoy memories a quarter century later!

Sometimes you just gotta yell and scream.
Sometimes it's the only thing to do
Noisy as a firetruck
You just gotta open up
and get the crowd's attention turned to you.
Then Marissa recalled how I taught classes how to make bread when she was a bit older (maybe 1st grade) and how special she felt that HER mom was coming to teach bread baking and how she was my assistant, how important she felt.  Boy did I feel important last night, sort of like a pat on the back years later for being the kind of mom I had hoped to be.  Those were good years.  Really Good Years. Busy years with so many schedules, very little money, but lots of silliness.  And what better way to start the week leading up to Mother's Day!

And now I see my children with busy lives, busy schedules, involved grandchildren and they are just as involved in their lives.  I think they have more money than we ever did but the silliness and joy exists when you put first things first.  It's a joy.  A Joy I am happy to possess.

***Marissa's recipe
Butter is a beautiful thing, but when it's browned, it turns into an intoxicating caramely, nutty substance, with a fragrance that's equally bewitching. When you combine this elixir with chocolate chip cookie dough, silly things such as unsuccessful attempts at phyllo dough, or knowing that you'll probably never meet your celebrity crush, are not that big a deal. Cookies fix everything. :D

Cook's Illustrated Chocolate Chip Cookies (recipe from Cook's Illustrated magazine) Print

1 3/4 cups of unbleached, all purpose flour (8 3/4 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon of baking Soda
14 Tablespoons of butter ( that's 1 and 3/4 sticks)
1/2 cup of granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
3/4 cup of packed dark brown sugar (5 1/4 ounces)
1 teaspoon of table salt ( I used 1 1/2 teaspoons)
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 1/4 cups of semi sweet chips or chunks (I used Ghirardelli's bittersweet chips)
3/4 cup of chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and baking Soda. Set is aside.

Heat 10 tablespoons butter in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking, swirling pan constantly until butter is dark golden brown and has nutty aroma, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and, using heatproof spatula, transfer browned butter to large heatproof bowl. Stir remaining 4 tablespoons butter into hot butter until completely melted.

Add both sugars, salt, and vanilla to bowl with butter and whisk until fully incorporated. 

Add egg and yolk and whisk until mixture is smooth with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds. Let mixture stand 3 minutes, then whisk for 30 seconds. Repeat process of resting and whisking 2 more times until mixture is thick, smooth, and shiny.

 Using rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir in flour mixture until just combined, about 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if using), giving dough final stir to ensure no flour pockets remain.

*Even though it wasn't in the recipe,I refrigerated my dough overnight. The dough is a little bit greasy, and chilling it seemed to help them bake-up into a fatter cookie*

Preheat the oven to 375F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Divide dough into 16 portions, each about 3 tablespoons (or use #24 cookie scoop). 

Arrange 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets, 8 dough balls per sheet. (Smaller baking sheets can be used, but will require 3 batches.)

Bake cookies 1 tray at a time until cookies are golden brown and still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, 10 to 14 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack; cool cookies completely before serving.

Makes 16 cookies


Lin Floyd said...

happy mother's day-it's wonderful to feel appreciated... and chocolate chip cookies too-WOW!

Jocelyn Christensen said...

I miss daddy!

Dawn Mercedes said...

awww...16 cookies?? I guess we'd have to triple that recipe!

LeAnn said...

The recipe looks like a good one. By the way I remember those tapes. My daughter had similar ones and had her children listen to them all of the time. I thought they were such a good idea. This brought back a few memories for me, also.
I do love it when my children remember special moments.

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